My telephone rang last night at 10:45. As I went in search of the handset, the mechanical voice announced, "Call from Kieffer, Steve." My dad. As a general rule, happy calls don't come after 9 pm. I braced myself. "Hello?" A slight pause on my dad's end, "Hey Maroon. What's doin?"
It was in the beat that he took before he spoke. It was the way my childhood nickname sounded gentle and fatherly. The dark cloud of tragedy has broken on our little family again. My beloved cousin has been issued her fate: Nothing more they can do. Cancer has spread. Go home.
Those words collected into little pools and then overflowed into the realities of loved ones near and far, each of us trying to stop the flooding. How can we bear this storm? How can we reach our arms to shield one another from the pounding force of eternity? There is nothing more we can do. We need to go home.
It seems that all too soon the drops of the storm and the oceans of our grieving will lift up our sister and deliver her to her rightful destination. She will see her own Father - the architect of the storms and the eternities and I hope we will have to courage to wave her on. Go home, dear one. Go home.
And we sure will miss you.
Wednesday, September 28, 2016
Thursday, June 18, 2015
We wake at dawn and rub our eyes and get on with it.
The child in our bed greets us with smiles
And that is enough for now.
We greet at doors and smile through pain
Lest a child feel the heavy.
And the child shall not feel the heavy.
Heavy was not part of the vows but we feel it.
And we are doing ok.
Our backs have grown strong from carrying the years
And we no more must draw from
The well of eyes that gave us drink at the first.
Oh the first.
Those blest days
That built the floor on which this house is laid.
The young walk the floors without the truth.
They walk. We scrub.
We keep the floor clean and private.
That is our floor.
We built it with row boats and wine and sex
With planes and rings and moves from norms
With care and pace our floor took form
Where wee feet now tread with dirt.
So much dirt.
And we try to keep it like new
But any man can tell that the floor is not new.
(I think I saw a tiny bit of shit on the steps.)
I got a rag and sprayed that shit
And now it looks like it did one day ago.
In those spaces where the shit is clean
The floor shows us a new space to shine.
(in a small way I am glad for the shit)
for socks and toes shall gild the floor.
We walk our floor at the end of our day
And we climb to those pools of eyes
That held us at the first.
The floor is there but we lie above it.
In the light we will go back to our rags
But the soft of thread and skin are just fine for now.
The child falls into the peace of sleep and so do I.
We are ok.